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Akron's Lighthouse Academy featured in national story about charter school closure laws

By John Published: January 31, 2012

Sarah Butrymowicz of The Hechinger Report has an interesting story in about the closure of Lighthouse Academy at the end of this school year because of poor academic performance. The new principal this year, Fannie Brown, is trying to keep the school alive, but ODE says closure is a done deal. 

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Ohio 2-year colleges asked for more convenience

By admin Published: January 30, 2012

COLUMBUS: Ohio’s higher education chief has asked community colleges to consider making their class schedules more convenient for busy students who also work and have families.

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Akron teachers' negotiations under more scrutiny with November levy looming

By admin Published: January 29, 2012

The Akron school board's decision to sit out the March primary and instead try for a new-money levy in November raises the stakes at the bargaining table for teachers, whose two-year contract expires this year.

Both sides agree that a negotiation demonstrating the teachers' willingness to sacrifice could help win support for a tax hike in tough times.

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Full-day kindergarten available for fee at Revere

By admin Published: January 29, 2012

BATH TWP.: The Revere Local School District will offer a pilot, all-day, tuition-based kindergarten program starting next school year.

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Find out about the hink in your sink at Akron science fair

By admin Published: January 27, 2012

Give this to the young scientists of Akron Public Schools they know how to promote their science fair projects with catchy titles.

Here are some of the projects from middle school and high school students that will be on display Saturday at the districtwide Science, Math and Technology Expo at North High School: Better Cookies Through Science; Pampers vs. Pull-Ups; The Hink of Your Sink! and What Surface in My School Is the Most Contaminated With Bacteria?

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Vindy details the troubled history of a charter school trying to locate in Norton

By John Published: January 26, 2012

A few weeks ago I wrote about a charter school created in the Liberty school district near Youngstown that is trying to open shop in Norton, an excellent rated district. I received some much-appreciated insight from Robert Guttersohn of the Youngstown Vindicator, who has been investigating the formation of the charter schools at Liberty. The Vindicator published his in-depth story on Sunday.

He's got some great details on how the plan to open the conversion charter schools within the district was sold to school board members.

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Cloverleaf school district placed in fiscal emergency, state oversight

By admin Published: January 25, 2012

Ohio Auditor Dave Yost placed Medina County’s Cloverleaf school district in fiscal emergency Tuesday because the district cannot overcome a nearly $600,000 deficit this June. The following year, the deficit will balloon to $2.6 million.

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New Firestone High School to cost nearly $74 million

By admin Published: January 24, 2012

School and city officials on Monday approved the initial plans for a new Firestone High School, estimated to cost nearly $74 million.

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Cloverleaf in fiscal emergency

By John Published: January 24, 2012

This just in from the Ohio Auditor:

 ''The Cloverleaf Local School District has some difficult decisions to make in the coming weeks and months,'' Auditor Yost said.  ''My office is ready to work with school officials and the commission to bring financial stability back to this struggling district.''

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New Firestone-Litchfield will be for grades 6 through 12

By John Published: January 24, 2012

We had some incorrect information on a story today about plans for the new Firestone High School/Litchfield Middle School Project.  It will be for grades 6 through 12, not 7 through 12.  The elementary schools in the cluster still will be K-5. We've corrected the story online and we'll run a print correction tomorrow. The two other combined high/middle school projects, East and Buchtel, are 7-12 buildings.

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Parents shop for school options

By admin Published: January 23, 2012

North Hill parent Gina Lang shopped for schools for her three children Sunday at an informational fair at the Akron-Summit County Public Library that brought area school districts, charter schools and private schools under one roof.

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Parents can peruse school options at education fair Sunday

By admin Published: January 20, 2012

Local parent Erica Brown has brought together representatives for 16 traditional schools, charter schools, private schools and state voucher programs for an informational fair.

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Read White Hat applications to operate state-sponsored charter schools

By John Published: January 18, 2012

StateImpact Ohio (NPR with local public radio stations) has been doing some good work tracking White Hat Management's applications to operate charter schools that would be sponsored by the state.  See Molly Bloom's post here.  So far she's found these interesting nuggets in the applications:

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Public, private or charter, oh my! School choice parent fair this Sunday

By John Published: January 17, 2012

Akron Public Schools will have a table at a parents fair this Sunday, from 2 to 4, at the Akron-Summit County Public Library's main branch in downtown Akron. Here's APS promoting open enrollment, which ends Feb. 3:

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Para Jones heads back to Stark State

By admin Published: January 17, 2012

Para Jones will tread on very familiar ground come Feb. 6. She will return to an employer for whom she has worked for 22 years – but this time as president.

Jones said she is delighted to become the fourth president of the tax-supported Stark State College.

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Celebrations Jan. 15

By admin Published: January 15, 2012


• Judit Puskas, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineer at the University of Akron, was named the Austin Chemical Co. chair in the engineering college. The chair is funded by the Austin Chemical Co. of Buffalo Grove, Ill.

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Ohio gets C+ on national education report card

By admin Published: January 13, 2012

COLUMBUS: Ohio’s education system earns a C+ on an industry publication’s national report card.

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Green High School students' schedules to be done online

By admin Published: January 12, 2012

GREEN: All scheduling of classes for Green High School freshmen through seniors will be done online for the next school year.

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Akron school board will pull levy from March ballot

By admin Published: January 10, 2012

The Akron school board voted Monday to pull a 5.9-mill levy from the March 6 ballot and pin all its hopes on passing a levy in the November presidential election.

Superintendent David James proposed removing the levy from the ballot as the first order of new business in the first meeting of the year, mainly because a March 6 election leaves officials little time to organize an effective campaign.

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What's the brain have to do with influential education research? Not much.

By John Published: January 10, 2012

Rick Hess, an influential education blogger, recently posted his list of influential education scholars on his blog for Education Week called Straight Up.  

I was pleased to see Daniel Willingham make the list at 33 out of 121. Willingham is a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Virginia who is an important voice in the emerging field of Mind, Brain and Education. I'm surprised to see him on the list, however. 

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Northwest superintendent to resign at end of school year

By John Published: January 10, 2012

Bill Stetler announced last night that he is resigning July 31. Stetler was named Northwest superintendent in 2008 and led the effort to pass a 1 percent earned income tax in 2010 after 10 failures in five years at the ballot.

From the district press release:

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Akron leads state in losses to open enrollment; Coventry in gains

By John Published: January 9, 2012

Last week I wrote a story about Akron's efforts to bring back students lost to charter schools and voucher schools.

On Saturday, the Plain Dealer had an interesting story about open enrollment and noted that Akron leads all districts in the number of students who attend other districts.

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Education law's promise falls short after 10 years

By admin Published: January 8, 2012

WASHINGTON: The No Child Left Behind education law was cast as a symbol of possibility, offering the promise of improved schools for the nation's poor and minority children and better prepared students in a competitive world.

Yet after a decade on the books, President George W. Bush's most hyped domestic accomplishment has become a symbol to many of federal overreach and Congress' inability to fix something that's clearly flawed.

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UA settles with former Bliss Institute staffer

By admin Published: January 7, 2012

The University of Akron has agreed to pay $125,000 to a former staffer in the Bliss Institute of Applied Politics whose contract was not renewed.

The payment represents about two years of salary and benefits for Gail Garbrandt, a politically active Democrat who at UA managed internships for political science students.

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New report shows for-profit charter school sector adding students, but not schools

By John Published: January 6, 2012

The National Education Policy Center in Colorado has released its 13th annual Profiles of For-Profit and Nonprofit Education Management Organizations report, a comprehensive look at the national charter school industry. I won't have time to read the report today, but it's available online here.

The report's key finding is that growth in the for-profit sector has leveled off over the last three years, but companies are rapidly boosting enrollment in their existing schools and expanding into other services. Non-profit charter enrollment is growing even faster, according to the report.  Akron-based White Hat Management operates 46 charter schools, according to the report. Virginia-based Imagine Schools is the largest for-profit in the country with 83 schools, including 2 in Akron.

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Kent State provost selected as new president at University of New Mexico

By admin Published: January 5, 2012

Kent State Provost Bob Frank will become president of his alma mater, the University of New Mexico.

The university's Board of Regents announced Wednesday that it tapped Frank, 59, from a field of five finalists as head of the university of 30,000 students.

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Akron Public Schools try to win back students

By admin Published: January 5, 2012

Leggett elementary, located a few blocks from the Summit County Jail, serves some of the poorest kids in Akron.

The school boasts an ''Effective'' rating on the latest state report cards and a new school building, but Principal Philomena Vincente still faces competition from charter schools.

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By admin Published: January 1, 2012


The Entertainment Software Association Foundation selected Emily Russo of Uniontown for a $3,000 scholarship at Kent State. She is one of 30 female and minority students across the nation who received awards for the 2011-12 school year. She is pursuing a career in computer and video game development.

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